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Is childbirth experience improved by a birth plan?
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Women's and Children's Health, International Maternal and Child Health (IMCH).
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Women's and Children's Health, International Maternal and Child Health (IMCH).
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Women's and Children's Health, International Maternal and Child Health (IMCH).
2003 (English)In: Journal of midwifery & women's health, ISSN 1526-9523, E-ISSN 1542-2011, Vol. 48, no 5, 322-328 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

From antenatal clinics in Sweden, 271 women were recruited after week 33 of pregnancy and given a questionnaire designed to assess their attitudes and feelings about the coming childbirth. Thereafter, they formulated a birth plan. The midwife in attendance at the birth was able to refer to this plan. Women who followed this program were compared with women from the same clinics who were asked to complete a questionnaire during the first postpartum week to assess their birth experience. A questionnaire at the end of pregnancy, followed by a birth plan, was not effective in improving women's experiences of childbirth. In the birth plan group, women gave significantly lower scores for the relationship to the first midwife they met during delivery, with respect to listening and paying attention to needs and desires, support, guiding, and respect. Although a birth plan did not improve the experience of childbirth in the overall group, there may be beneficial effects with regard to fear, pain, and concerns about the newborn for certain subgroups of women.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2003. Vol. 48, no 5, 322-328 p.
National Category
Medical and Health Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-89846DOI: 10.1016/S1526-9523(03)00278-2PubMedID: 14526345OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-89846DiVA: diva2:161653
Available from: 2002-04-26 Created: 2002-04-26 Last updated: 2013-08-01Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Releasing and relieving encounters: Experiences of pregnancy and childbirth
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Releasing and relieving encounters: Experiences of pregnancy and childbirth
2002 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The experience of childbirth is an important life event for women, which may follow them throughout life. The overall aim of this thesis has been to describe and analyse these experiences from the women's perspective as well as the encounter between the woman and the midwife, and the possibility that a birth plan might improve women's experience of childbirth. The setting has been the ABC-centre (Alternative Birth Care), antenatal clinics and Sahlgrenska University hospital in Göteborg, and Karolinska hospital in Stockholm, Sweden. The studies have used both qualitative (phenomenological and hermeneutic) and quantitative approaches. The essential structure of the experiences of pregnancy and childbirth may be conceptualised under the heading ‘releasing and relieving encounters’, which for the woman constitutes an encounter with herself as well as with the midwife, and includes stillness as well as change. Stillness is expressed as being in the moment; exemplified as presence and being one's body. Change is expressed as transition; to the unknown and to motherhood. In the releasing and relieving encounter, for the midwife stillness and change equals being both anchored and a companion. To be a companion is to be an available person that listens to and follows the woman through the process of childbirth. To be anchored is to be the person that in the transition process respects the limits of the woman's ability as well as her own professional limits. The releasing and relieving encounter is not improved for women by a birth plan. Instead, in some aspects the relationship between the woman and her midwife during childbirth is reported as less satisfactory if preceded by a birth plan although some experiences of fear, pain and concerns for the child might be improved.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis, 2002. 75 p.
Series
Comprehensive Summaries of Uppsala Dissertations from the Faculty of Medicine, ISSN 0282-7476 ; 1143
Keyword
Obstetrics and gynaecology, pregnancy, childbirth, women's experiences, encounter, pain, birth plan, hermeneutic, phenomenological, intervention study, Obstetrik och kvinnosjukdomar
National Category
Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Medicine
Research subject
Obstetrics and Gynaecology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-2022 (URN)91-554-5292-2 (ISBN)
Public defence
2002-05-23, Rosén-salen, Akademiska sjukhuset, Uppsala, 09:15
Opponent
Available from: 2002-04-26 Created: 2002-04-26Bibliographically approved

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Lindmark, Gunilla

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